Producer: Thibaut-Janisson Winery
Region: Virginia
Blend: 100% chardonnay
Winemaking: 33% oak aged
ABV: 12.5%
Price: $40*

* Review sample provided by the winery

Thibaut-Janisson Winery NV Xtra Brut

Thibaut-Janisson Winery NV Xtra Brut

92 points

Thibaut-Janisson Winery, a collaboration between fifth-generation French winemaker Claude Thibaut (who has also worked in California and Australia) and Manuel Janisson of the Champagne Janisson & Fils, is the premier sparkling wine producer in Virginia and one of the top in the East.

Made with 100% chardonnay – one-third of which was aged in oak – this wine smells of fresh, clean orchard fruit – melange of apples and pears – with layers of toasted hazelnuts, saline minerality and just a hint of toasty oak and roasted pear.

The medium-bodied palate shows nice richness and concentration as well as nice linearity in the mouth thanks to a beam of fresh acidity that runs right through the middle. It's bone dry without being austere in the least. The finish is long and nutty with just a hint of oak and more of that roasted tree fruit character.

This is benchmark-type stuff for Virginia sparkling wine.

About Author

Lenn Thompson, a proud Pittsburgh, PA native, moved to Long Island more than a decade ago and quickly fell in love with the region’s dynamic and emerging wine community. A digital and content marketing and community professional by day, he founded in early 2004 to share his passion for the wines, beers and spirits of New York State. After running that site -- which became the premier source for independent New York wine commentary, reviews and news -- for 12 years, he launched in late 2016 to add the wines of Virginia, Maryland, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Vermont and beyond to his beat. Lenn currently serves as the wine columnist for The Suffolk Times weekly newspaper and is the former editor of the Long Island Wine Gazette. He contributes or has contributed to publications like Wine Enthusiast Magazine, Beverage Media, Edible Brooklyn, Edible East End and Edible Hudson Valley. Lenn served on the board of directors for Drink Local Wine, and is the creator and founder of TasteCamp, an annual regional wine immersion conference for writers and trade. An admitted riesling and cabernet franc fanatic, he’s intensely passionate about eating local and the many local wine regions of America. Lenn lives in Miller Place, NY with his wife Nena, son Jackson, daughter Anna and their dog, Casey Lemieux Thompson.

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